Holiday Exercise – Yes or No?

This time of the year there is a lot of talk on the internet about working out on your holiday. Some people believe that time should be spent on more important things and others that you should honour the commitment you have made to yourself. Both of them triggered thoughts that allowed me to explore the answer within my self.

Last week I came back from a much needed holiday.

I don’t remember the last time that I had a comfortable and luxurious holiday. The past winter has been one of the most challenging ones in my life. I felt I deserved it, and I did everything in my power to get it. Personal issues slapped me on the face on alternate cheeks. When one was healing, the other one was due to getting a slapping.

Because of these issues, exercise became a challenge in the sense that it wasn’t as frequent as it used to be, and it didn’t spark much joy as Marie Kondo would say. However, instead of disposing of it in the oblivion of the bin, I kept exercising even when I didn’t feel like it. I give myself credit that exercise has become an automatic habit, just like brushing my teeth. I don’t particularly find joy brushing my teeth either, but I do it, and my mouth feels better for it, and so does my body when it gets regular movement.

So when I packed my suitcase for my holiday, and I threw a few workout clothes in it, I wasn’t convinced that they’d be worth the luggage allowance. But feeling hopeful that things may change for me I thought I’d better pack them. I can’t speak for others, but these are the two most important reasons that emerged during my stay that reinforced my decision to train.

  • Most of the year, I try to squeeze a workout here or there between household errands, school runs and work. Working out on holiday gave me permission to do it whenever I felt best doing it. I didn’t have to force a slot for it. I got to do it when I felt like it and not what my schedule dictated. That felt so liberating to be able to make a choice.


  • During the winter months, my energy levels dip. I suspect this is due to a combination of cold weather and tiredness that comes naturally from the demands of a school year that push me into a hibernation mode. Like most people, I have accepted that there will be a time I will feel more energetic than others. I am not going to lie, the majority of my holiday (apart from a couple of excursions) I spent it resting on a lounger under the sun. When the sensation of the burning sun on my skin became more painful than my motivation for getting a tan, I’d shift my bottom a couple of inches under the beach umbrella. Pretty much that was my day with a few breaks in between for eating delicious food.  I don’t get the chance to get so much sleep and rest. To be able to train from a state of full rest felt rejuvenating.

Whatever anyone says you got to do what feels right for you with full conviction. I remember that I texted a friend saying that I will go to the gym, and I felt immediate discomfort when I pressed the send button. I was worried that she will think that I am a gym bunny, that I am obsessed and so many other things that have been projected on me over the years.

At that moment, I had the choice to do what felt right for me and align my decisions with my authentic self.  You can’t keep holding on to what people say or don’t say about you. If they don’t spark joy, get rid of them!

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